Former general charged with spying for China

By Rich Chang  /  Staff Reporter

Sat, May 21, 2011 - Page 1

Military prosecutors yesterday indicted Lo Hsien-che (羅賢哲), former head of communications and electronic information at the army command headquarters, on suspicion of providing military secrets to China, saying they would seek a sentence of life in prison.

Lo, at the center of the nation’s biggest espionage case in 50 years, has been detained since Jan. 25.

The Ministry of National Defense said in a statement that Lo was charged in accordance with military law with spying for the enemy, delivering military secrets to the enemy and receiving bribes.

The statement alleged that Lo was recruited by Chinese agents in 2004 and is suspected of collecting military secrets and delivering confidential information to Beijing.

The statement said that Lo, as a high-ranking military official who had been cultivated by the ministry and his country, should have been loyal and served his country. Instead, Lo’s actions seriously jeopardized national interests, national security as well as the reputation and morale of the military, it said.

The statement added that Lo could have been recommended for the death penalty, but given that he had admitted his actions during the investigation and that he returned bribes he took from China, military prosecutors requested life imprisonment instead.

The statement did not mention whether the 51-year-old one-star general had had access to a joint Taiwan-US military communications project, called Po Sheng, and whether he had leaked confidential information about the project.

Local media previously alleged Lo was lured by sex and money offered by a female Chinese agent while he was stationed in Thailand between 2002 and 2005.

The Chinese-language United Evening News yesterday cited anonymous military sources as alleging that Lo frequented prostitutes when he was in Thailand and that Chinese agents blackmailed him after they had filmed him.

The ministry yesterday declined to comment on the sex allegations against Lo.